The Resurrection Project (TRP) is pleased to announce a Notice of Funding Opportunity for the Fiscal Year 2022 Illinois Access to Justice (ILA2J) program for Immigration Legal Services in the Western Suburbs of Chicago.
ILA2J is a statewide program that directs funds to mitigate the devastating consequences of incarceration and harsh immigration policies by expanding effective and holistic community-based legal services to vulnerable communities, training Community Navigators to conduct mass know-your-rights education and outreach, sharing best practices among partner organizations to increase their local capacity to deliver effective services, and reintegrating the most vulnerable populations into their families, communities, and workforce.
ILA2J seeks to strengthen the existing infrastructure of community-based organizations by providing the funding they need to hire and retain talented attorneys, train community navigators, and remove barriers to family sustaining employment.
Funds disbursed through this NOFO are limited to legal services for communities impacted by immigration policies. Agencies funded under this grant opportunity must be located in or provide more than 50% of their legal services to immigrants residing in the Western Suburbs of Chicago. Additional eligibility requirements are detailed in the NOFO.
Please note that funding for this program is provided by the State of Illinois to support services delivered in FY2022. This anticipated funding opportunity is subject to approval for the program administrators to finalize a grant agreement with the Illinois Department of Human Services and is subject to withdrawal or cancellation at any time.
Full proposals for funding are due July 28, 2021 at 11:59pm.
Please view the Notice of Funding Opportunity HERE, applicant resources HERE, and visit the Illinois Access to Justice’s website for additional resources: www.ilaccesstojustice.com.
GET CLEARED, ILLINOIS
The following describes one of the most immediate as well as one of the long-term structural goals.
Short Term Immediate Goal: Enlisting additional judges to sign orders for uncontested petitions on an ongoing, regular basis.
Per the Illinois expungement and sealing statute (20ILCS 2630/Criminal Identification Act) the only time the court is required to set a date for a hearing is if/when an objection has been filed.
If no objection has been filed discretionary relief is warranted so on a regular basis a pool of judges could sign uncontested petitions to expunge or seal. This would more immediately address a high volume of uncontested petitions that are still currently being heard by a presiding judge, and formally read into the record on scheduled court calls.
Long Term Goal: Having additional judges permanently assigned to hear contested petitions (those with objections) on more than two days a week.
With uncontested petitions being handled administratively, and additional court dates and judges to hear only those petitions that are required to be set for hearing, this would address both the current backlog and work towards lowering the current wait time of approximately one year for a petition to be heard.
Currently, one organization, Legal Aid Chicago has over 40 petitions pending that were filed between 11 and 14 months ago. To date, they have received no notice of objections or hearings on these petitions. They have over 75 petitions that were filed prior to March 2020 (over 8 months ago)